ADOPTION!!! What are the first words that come to your mind when I say it, “Family, babies, happiness or expensive, heartbreaking and time consuming”? Many people have different assumptions about adoption and many of those assumptions are incorrect. I really felt I should write something about the myths and stereotypes about adoption in the African American community and clear a few things.
Black people don’t give away their babies
Stop!!! First, a woman does not give away her baby. She is making a brave and courageous decision to give her child a life that she is unable to give. I’ve worked with many women from every background. All the years I’ve worked in adoption, I never met a woman who “wants” to do an adoption. It’s usually her life circumstances that force her to make this hard decision.
And why don’t Black women place their child for adoption? We have to struggle and work as hard as any other women out there. And unfortunately sometimes life does not give a fair start. Usually when a Black woman makes the decision to place her child for adoption she wants her child to go into a Black family. (There is nothing wrong with a Black child going to a Caucasian family, but I’m speaking from my experience.) BUT there aren’t any Black families to adopt! Why? I know Black folks experience infertility or have to find other alternatives to build their families. Why aren’t we also looking at the option of adoption? I’ll tell you why, because of all the misconceptions and bad information. Let’s set the record straight, there are healthy Black babies out there in need of good homes, we shouldn’t be lacking good Black families.
Adoption is expensive….
Again my people, this is incorrect information. Did you know that there is a $13,000 tax credit for families that have adopted? Also, because of the lack of Black families willing to adopt, most agencies are willing to have the cost drastically lowered compared to the average adoption. I know so many little tricks that could make your adoption so affordable, it would be cheaper than having a c-section at the hospital.
It takes a long time to adopt….
As mentioned above, there are Black women wanting to give their child a good home, but there is a lack of Black families. The time it would take for a Black family to adopt would probably be around six months or less. (Can’t guarantee this, but can say this with a lot of confidence.)
She will come back and take her baby…
Don’t always listen to what you hear on the news. That’s like saying every airplane that flies will crash. Look, there are hundreds of adoptions that happen each day and the news will pick up on the 1 out of 1,000 bad adoptions. Adoptions are safe and agencies are bound by confidentiality. A woman cannot legally show up on your doorstep and demand her child back.
I want our children to go into good homes, and I don’t want Black women to be discouraged because they are not able to find the family they want for their child. So before listening to bad information, take some time to learn the truth and consider adoption as an option.
Chala Barrington-Cruz is the founder and Executive Director of Adoption Consultants of Florida. If you have any question please call or email firstname.lastname@example.org or 407-850-8346. Visit Adoption Consultants of Florida facebook page for adoption discussions and tips.
Regina Townsend is the primary author and founder of TheBrokenBrownEgg. A librarian and writer, Regina’s mission is to make people aware and active about the unique concerns of reproductive health in the minority community.